Telstra has coughed up AU$1.5 million to pay a fine levelled at it after the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) found the telco had stopped porting phone numbers due to the COVID-19 pandemic hitting its offshore operations. ACMA said over 42,000 services were impacted by the pause instigated in March 2020, and that Telstra took until October to clear the backlog once normal service was resumed in July. “The ACMA found that Telstra unilaterally cancelled transfer requests that were scheduled to occur and stopped accepting new requests,” it said. “This was done without prior warning to other telcos, which were left not being able to help new and existing customers to transfer their service, while keeping their phone number.” In setting the size of the fine, ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said the regulator appreciated the impact of coronavirus, and took it into account. “However, it is clear Telstra, for a sustained period, did not have sufficient plans in place to comply with an important consumer safeguard that promotes competition in the telco market,” the chair said. “Telstra was on notice that the ACMA took these consumer and competition measures seriously and would not be exercising regulatory forbearance for non-compliance…. Read full this story
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